When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. My mom is the best at this. After her work conference was canceled due to COVID constraints, my generous mother kept her reservation to New Orleans and toted my much older sister & me along for a whirlwind girls’ trip. Sporting medical masks and matching Mardi Gras-themed outfits, we took on the Creole city with gusto.
It was my first time to the Big Easy, and I have to say… I’m smitten. Though I failed to pack sufficient changes of clothes for the piles of perspiration that Louisiana humidity produces in an Oregonian, and made the mistake of attempting to break in a fresh pair of Birkenstocks whilst traversing the French Quarter; the history, cuisine, culture, and the people stole my heart.
Truth be told, we ate our way around the city– enjoying signature staples such as gumbo, jambalaya, etouffee, crayfish, beignets, and the famous muffuletta sandwich. We celebrated my birthday at one landmark locale and they surprised us with a mountain of cotton candy after we’d already partaken of bananas foster– a dessert invented at that very establishment.
We also did our share of, ahem, beveraging— and I’m not at all bitter in sharing that my MOTHER was carded numerous times while no one asked to see my ID even a single time.
We also toured Mardi Gras World, where many of the famous parade floats are handcrafted and housed until Fat Tuesday, each year.
The air-boat swamp tour was a definite highlight, and though we adored the gators we met in the wild we also enjoyed sampling their relations, deep-fried, later that same evening.
A somber portion of our trip was a tour of a nearby sugarcane plantation, which featured a sobering vantage of the slave-labor it was built upon.
All in all, it was a lovely time– an adventuresome getaway with two of my favorite gals. The Big Easy, a New Orleans state of mind, was just what the nurse-practitioner ordered.